Quaid-e-Azam University secures top slot in HEC university rankings

Published: May 25, 2015


ISLAMABAD: Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad came out on top of the Higher Education Commission’s list of university rankings in Pakistan for the year 2013-14, released on Monday.

University of Agriculture in Faisalabad and University of Punjab in Lahore secured second and third positions respectively, as per the HEC.

Although the report was published after a year’s delay, HEC chairperson Dr Mukhtar Ahmad stated at its launch, “After much effort, the herculean task of collecting, analysing and the final evaluation for the new ranking was made possible.”

“This time we have tried our best to overcome all technical statistical bias,” he added, while admitting there were errors in the 2012 rankings, published in 2013.

Read: Delay in varsity ranking: HEC struggles to collect authentic data

The ranking was conducted for 120 varsities present prior to June 30, 2009. Nineteen universities awarded charter after June 30, 2009, have not been included in the list.

Further, Allama Iqbal Open University and Virtual University were excluded from the list for providing incomplete data.

Unlike previous rankings, the HEC shelved the idea of categorising the varsities in large, medium and small categories and this time released a general rankings list, including all disciplines.

The universities which made it to the top 10 in ‘overall ranking’ can be seen in the table below.

Read: 2013-14: HEC set to launch varsities rankings

The chairperson said universities that have over 50% students in any discipline have been categorised in subject ranking.

“LUMS has not been listed in the business category as it has vast areas of subjects now, unlike the past,” Ahmad told The Express Tribune.

The HEC rankings were based on the implementation status of quality assurance, teaching quality, research produced at the universities, finance and facilities for social integration and community development.


IBA tops rankings for Business Education

The Institute of Business Administration (IBA) emerged as the highest-ranked university in the category of Business Education.

Lahore School of Economics and Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST) in Karachi followed on the second and third rank for business, respectively.


NUST tops rankings for Engineering & Technology

National University of Sciences and Technology (Nust) in Islamabad was declared to be the best university in the “Engineering & Technology” category, bringing previously ranked number one in the category, Pakistan Institute of Engineering & Applied Sciences (PIEAS), Islamabad, to second place.


Aga Khan University tops rankings for Medicine

Aga Khan University was accorded the highest rank in the disciplines of “Medicine”. The medical university in Karachi was followed by University of Health Sciences in Lahore and DOW University of Health Sciences in Karachi, respectively.


University of Agriculture in Faisalabad tops rankings for Agriculture/Veterinary

University of Agriculture in Faisalabad and University of Veterinary & Animal Sciences in Lahore secured the first and second place in “Agriculture/Veterinary” category respectively.


NCA tops rankings for Arts

Of only two universities ranked by the HEC for Arts, the National College of Arts (NCA) in Lahore secured the first rank, while Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture in Karachi came in second.

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Reader Comments (45)

  • joke
    May 25, 2015 - 6:56PM

    As a recruiter, I’m going to have to laugh. I’ll point out and laugh at the fact that IBA and LUMS graduates earn roughly 70-80% more than graduates of LSE and SZABIST. The technicalities of this report exposes the fact that HEC has its head in the sand when it comes to actual market data of graduates from industry rather than its own theoretical benchmarks far disconnected from reality.

    People can all point and claim there university was ranked x on HECs list but market pays and hires based on how graduates from various universities perform and unfortunately it is this disconnect that will lead people making misinformed decisions thinking graduating from IMS Peshawer or LSE in business degrees will somehow lead to better future vs say compared to LUMS.Recommend

  • Anoni
    May 25, 2015 - 7:06PM

    Laughable …..they can exclude LUMS so easily

    Amazing ranking Recommend

  • Dr. D
    May 25, 2015 - 7:11PM

    Brace yourselves fiery LUMSIAN comments are coming.Recommend

  • Batman
    May 25, 2015 - 7:20PM

    @joke: As a recruiter I believe you have incomplete data. You are going by the surface, lums graduates may be earning a little more but how many are they in number out of the entire batch. I have found most lums graduates to be confused and stay dissatisfied at work when hired at below par salaries. They somehow seem to be under façade that they’ll be highly paid individuals once they enter the job market. On the other hand more and more companies are looking to hire graduates from universities mentioned in this list. Recommend

  • Aftab
    May 25, 2015 - 7:34PM

    HEC is a collection of natural sciences that know nothing about social sciences. Exclusion of LUMS from the business category make the ranking really questionable. Recommend

  • Safi
    May 25, 2015 - 7:36PM

    I have been in higher education in Pakistan since five years and have friends in all top universities of Pakistan. And I can confidently say this report is laughable.Recommend

  • Haroon
    May 25, 2015 - 7:48PM

    What a shame!

    I think somebody has to remind HEC that almost all the top ranked business schools internationally are part of universities which offer “vast areas of subjects”. HEC should have aimed for ‘ranking universities with the best business schools’ in the relevant category rather than ‘ranking universities which only have business schools’. The “Higher Education” Commission needs to educate itself and understand what purpose rankings are supposed to fulfill.Recommend

  • Ayesha
    May 25, 2015 - 9:38PM

    I don’t get how LUMS hasn’t made it to the Business category but NUST has been included in the engineering category despite the fact the latter has setups for both Business School and Architecture too. These rankings are plain biased.Recommend

  • Abdul Rauf
    May 25, 2015 - 9:40PM

    Why not Quaid I Azam University one of the best university in HEC ranking? University’s Faculty is delivering their best thoughts to nationalists. Most of the students belong in the university to middle families; the purpose of education is not getting the high paid jobs but providing the best services for their people. The best thinkers and policy makers are the QuaidiansRecommend

  • Rania
    May 25, 2015 - 10:08PM

    LUMS has been moved from Business School category.
    Everyone please correct your knowledge. Recommend

  • zain
    May 25, 2015 - 11:05PM

    For those point fingers on LUMS not being part of ranking :

    No doubt LUMS is the best in term of quality of education specially at undergraduate level but while ranking universities other factors such as number of PHD’s produced, total number of students, total faculty are also considered where LUMS lacks behind other universities. Recommend

  • Dear
    May 25, 2015 - 11:29PM

    This ranking will do more harm to HEC itself than to LUMS. Recruiters now know that the no longer need to look such crap HEC ranking to search for best youngsters. It is HEC who is loosing its credibility not LUMS. LUMS dont deserve to be ranked by such highly incompetent people of HEC. Nobody needs to prove HEC that LUMS is the best in business category. Nobody needs to prove that LUMS is the best university of Pakistan. International agencies have already ranked LUMS as best in Pakistan for business category. Though it is time to laugh upon HEC but there should be legal action taken by LUMS against HEC for misleading people of Pakistan and abroad because this ranking will harm LUMS reputation especially abroad. people in Pakistan do know LUMS but people abroad can look for such Crap HEC ranking before hiring any Luminite.Recommend

  • Akbar
    May 25, 2015 - 11:54PM

    @joke: oh man. You clearly have no idea what rankings are based upon. They are based on numbers of PhDs produced, quality of faculty and the citations per research paper produced by a university.

    Lately, LUMS has been focussed on SSE and their Social Sciences department than their School of Business. And, much of the coveted faculty of LUMS has either left the institute or is in process of leaving.

    I am a graduate of Manchester Business School and a recuiter of a major MNC in Lahore and I’d take an LSE graduate over a LUMS one any day because of their work agility, humility and grounded attitude. And honestly, LSE has eaten a major chunk of LUMS job market, hence the reason of the frustration of the LUMSians over LSE grads. Period!Recommend

  • Ahmed
    May 26, 2015 - 12:28AM

    This report is simply laughable. How can they not include LUMS? What a shame. HEC is the one losing credibility. The employers know that LUMS is way way better than the other universities and hence these ranking are pure nonsense.Recommend

  • Dear
    May 26, 2015 - 2:16AM

    LUMS was founded with its business school, Suleman Dawood School of Business. Gives best MBAs to PakistanRecommend

  • Ali Suhail
    May 26, 2015 - 2:32AM

    for once LUMINTES lety our university fly higher you have multiple schools and now you are better than scoring criteria tats why we are not in local ranking. :pRecommend

  • Ammar Subhani
    May 26, 2015 - 2:37AM

    Sounds like a market failure to me. Some of these universities (e.g. LSE, SZABIST) need to do better signaling to the markets. Seems like LUMS has created a fictitious identity based on aggressive marketing. However, they don’t have much research output to show. Recommend

  • Hamza
    May 26, 2015 - 4:01AM

    It is good to learn that finally Pakistani Universities are catching up with research publications. I read few comments above, to those who are criticizing the list. My friends this list is mainly based on theory and practice based research conducted and publish in international journals around the world. Quaid-e-Azam University faculty, along with students are more into research work than any other University, reason they are at the top.

    We all do research at some level, even when we plan a trip, we do research on where to go and what things to do there. Scientific research is extremely important in 21st century, and Alhumdulillah we see budding scientists in Pakistan now.

    Best wishes to all the readers and Pakistan.


  • raja
    May 26, 2015 - 6:03AM

    what, no ranking for Exact university,last I know they were the most popular destination for degrees. So much so they were mentioned by US news.Recommend

  • Amber
    May 26, 2015 - 8:30AM

    “International agencies have already ranked LUMS as best in Pakistan for business category.”
    Please share?! I haven’t come across any such ranking.Recommend

  • Amber
    May 26, 2015 - 8:33AM

    I believe HEC looked at the %age of students enrolled in a discipline. If more than 50% of an institute’s students are enrolled in business or engineering programs, it will be classified as such.Recommend

  • Muhammad Usman
    May 26, 2015 - 10:08AM

    I must say HEC should follow international rankings so that we can compete internationally. Universities, in general, are required to compete for international rankings such as QS ranking. The local ranking is nothing but a waste of the limited resources of HEC, Recommend

  • Mazhar
    May 26, 2015 - 11:08AM

    When LUMS was no.1 and IBA was no.2, LUMS graduates would brag about its superiority because of HEC ranking though IBA has produced highest number of CEOs and graduates servings in top multinational companies in the region.Now since LUMS has lost its position,suddenly HEC ranking has become laughable.Recommend

  • Mazhar
    May 26, 2015 - 11:08AM

    When LUMS was no.1 and IBA was no.2, LUMS graduates would brag about its superiority because of HEC ranking though IBA has produced highest number of CEOs and graduates servings in top multinational companies in the region.Now since LUMS has lost its position,suddenly HEC ranking has become laughable.Recommend

  • Mazhar
    May 26, 2015 - 11:08AM

    When LUMS was no.1 and IBA was no.2, LUMS graduates would brag about its superiority because of HEC ranking though IBA has produced highest number of CEOs and graduates servings in top multinational companies in the region.Now since LUMS has lost its position,suddenly HEC ranking has become laughable.Recommend

  • @no joke
    May 26, 2015 - 3:30PM

    @joke: Thank you for your comment. Both LUMS and LSE MBAs are equally good. As far as the market paying more to LUMS, if you know the data, at LUMS almost all MBAs have at least two years of experience while at LSE they have none. Still LSE MBAs have done very well in the job market mainly because of their positive attitude. As far as rankings’ validity is concerned, LUMS has been advertising for one year it was no 1 (!) Now it is not, you are unhappy. Let us focus on making both schools better as this is what Pakistan needs, instead of denigrating either. Recommend

  • International
    May 26, 2015 - 3:44PM

    NUST, QAU, and even COMSAT are the universities with best international rankings. LUMS or IBA don’t even enter the picture they aren’t anywere in top 500 list of any known reputed international rating agency but NUST and QAU are amongst top hundred international.

    Even CERN is going to collaborate with only NUST and COMSATS, and LUMS Engineering is probably one of lowest quality engineering programs even locally in terms of faculty and cirriculum.

    And it is surprising lums grads still commenting they are ranked better internationally, may be on Mars they are! They got their fame from self-flattery based on false claims.Recommend

  • Zaki
    May 26, 2015 - 4:02PM

    Let me inform all of you, in QS World University Ranking, LUMS has lost its position from 601+ for the Year 2014 to 701+ for the Year 2015 and moreover, in subject ranking also, LUMS has no position in QS Subject wise ranking. How do you take this. Please comment.Recommend

  • Ambi
    May 26, 2015 - 7:21PM


    As far as I know, IBA has never applied for international ranking. Generally, one needs to actually submit an application to the ranking agencies and then they include you (if applicable) in their ranking.Recommend

  • Abdul Jan Khan
    May 26, 2015 - 7:57PM

    University that discrimnate on basis of age and doesn’t allow anyone over 26 to join their programs is on top of this list…………….its the joke of the day :)Recommend

  • Reading Power
    May 26, 2015 - 8:08PM

    Those laughing at HEC ranking because of exclusion of LUMS should laugh at themselves. Can’t you read what the news has written? LUMS is moved to general category because its business students are less than 50% of its total strength. And in general category, only business education won’t suffice. It needs higher efforts and money to place yourself in general universities…Recommend

  • Hamid Nasir
    May 26, 2015 - 8:29PM

    I don’t believe this is based on facts, how come UET peshawar is above than UET Taxila in ranking? On what basis? Recommend

  • @Ambi
    May 26, 2015 - 8:59PM

    IBA is not a university that can attracts one single international student application so they obviously don’t need to apply for international rankings. (Not that they will be ranked in top thousands even if they did apply.)Recommend

  • Mazhar Fareed
    May 26, 2015 - 11:36PM

    How Uet peshawar can be above Uet Taxila,,,also wondering about Lums … Hec loosing its repo..)Recommend

  • Mazhar Fareed
    May 26, 2015 - 11:40PM

    I don’t believe this is based on facts, how come UET peshawar is above than UET Taxila in ranking?Also Wondering about lumsRecommend

  • ASim
    May 27, 2015 - 1:05AM

    Whats about NUCES FAST, FAST is good in IT but not mentioned anywhere by HEC,..Recommend

  • @ no joke
    May 27, 2015 - 7:25AM

    Hi those who are denigrating and laughing at HEC rankings – to be fair to all readers, you must produce emails of anger or discontent when the previous HEC rankings put LUMS at first position despite the fact that SDSB was given weight of entire LUMS? Did you protest then? If you did NOT then it means you accepted HEC’s validity? Why protest now?Recommend

  • @ no joke
    May 27, 2015 - 7:28AM

    I am sorry to say but LUMS’ MBA status is in decline, mainly due to these reasons a) Top faculty (just take the example of the best academic at LUMS – Dr Farzad) has left b) Old faculty (oldies) are busy making money at USAID c) LUMS MBAs have an attitude. LUMS is a very good university but nobody and no institution can become “too proud”. Sorry…Recommend

  • A Peshawary
    May 27, 2015 - 2:07PM

    @Hamid Nasir:
    Is it that University is Peshawar it can’t be a better universality than Taxila? Please accept the reality and start believing the HEC has made UAT Peshawar better than UAT Taxila.

    A PeshawaryRecommend

  • Syed
    May 27, 2015 - 3:21PM

    Szabist not included in Engineering category… HEC should public the ranking criteria.Recommend

  • hey
    May 27, 2015 - 6:00PM

    It is public – visit the HEC websiteRecommend

  • sara
    May 27, 2015 - 7:52PM

    HEC ranking has always been authentic. Now that LSE and SAZBIST have been ranked 2nd and third, it really does show that they have improved themselves and now they deserve it. Moreover many companies now have stopped hiring LUMS graduates. Recommend

  • Mashriq Khan
    May 27, 2015 - 8:06PM

    Where is historical Government College University Lahore (the university which holds the most valuable humanities degree in Pakistan for over a century) and Forman Christian College University? Recommend

  • Murtaza
    May 28, 2015 - 8:17PM

    Perception is not reality, university ranking criteria should be known, public sector universities perform much better as they serve all not particular segment of society, they simply cannot be compared with LUMS, IBA, NUST or GIK.Recommend

  • Truthteller
    May 29, 2015 - 8:53AM

    LUMS is a good university but SDSB is only one small part of LUMS – and with SDSB’s four “shark professors” making tons of money off USAID and not focusing on the MBA program this had to happen. Wake up.Recommend

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